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City of Gold – review

city-of-goldCity of Gold by Mahesh Manjrekar treads the path between a classic movie and commercial movie and hits you hard. Packed with powerful performances, characterization and an earthy cast the movie wins over us in most of the scenes barring few jerky moments that can be excused.

The movie starts with Baba (Ankush Chaudhary) taking you back to 80’s and recounting his life in the urban poor chawl and how his family consisting his parents, two brothers and sisters fought for survival during the time when mills where shut down due to mill owners-mafia-politician nexus capitalizing on the real estate boom.

The director captures the family as the canvas to showcase the grim reality that creeped in the life of thousands who lost their job and whose lives took a turn to despair, bad and ugly.  Seema Biswas brilliantly sketches the role of the mother who helplessly sees the life crumpling around and her children caught in various circumstances of despair.  Scenes like when the mother beats his son who returns from police station and night when everyone is asleep weeps and applies medicine to him, when the family discovers that the unmarried daughter is pregnant,  and her silent weep in hospital when her daughter gets the abortion done numbs the audience…

Yes, the director traversing various characters and sub-plots of the characters have wavered from the core theme of the movie that is the plight of the mill owners and rather made it appear like a plight of a family but then as it is the movie did strike chord. Karan Patel as Naru,  Siddharth Jhadav as Speed breaker stays in your thoughts even after the movie is over. The background score works brilliantly and a big relief is the movie has no song except for the title track.

The one thing that let me down was the ending scene of the movie. The director could have dealt it differently but then criminals do exists so even that could be excused but the flaw is it hijacks the emotional chord the director struck throughout the movie.

GingerChai Verdict: A de-glamorised movie with no star appeal but strikes the chord with raw power.  A hard hitting movie that you might well watch. The move may not be appealing everyone. If you like a serious subject made with a dash of commercial mix, you will like it.

Unfortunately, there were only 6 people  in the entire hall watching the movie along with me.  So if you want to watch it, rush this weekend,  it may not be in theaters for long.

– Reviewd by Lakshmi Rajan. He is the Chief Blogger-Editor of GingerChai. To read other articles of Lakshmi Rajan, Click HERE.

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0 23 April, 2010 Movies April 23, 2010

About the author

He is the lead man of GingerChai and plays the multi role of chief author, editor, business development and also of a chaiwala! (Tea maker!) He is the master brewer at Ginger Chai.

View all articles by Lakshmi Rajan


      1. Lazy Pineapple

        I saw the movie…I was impressed with the direction and acting. It reminded me of the movies in the 80’s and 90’s where poverty reigned roost and how gansters evolved.

        Though it left me feeling quite depressed 🙁

  1. hitesh

    i really appreciate that you saw this movie on theater… sometimes feels stupid to sit in the hall with only a handful ppl called as audience…….

    and when these movies are available on internet then ppl try to skip these kind of movies……but we need to watch these movies in theater so that movie makers get some hope…….that they have an audience….not everyone is a fan of Big starrer movies…..

    I too have good hopes from this movie…….but watch movie is too expensive in Bengaluru……that’s why i wait for maxi movies to release on DVD…..think i’ll wait for this one too

    1. Post author
      Lakshmi Rajan

      Thanks :mean: And I wish such movies get backings of the audience. People easily criticize bollywood for making nonsense movies but we don’t support off-beat movies that shatter the regular bollywood diet… and most of them prefer to watch it in a pirated CD. So inturn, the producers bankupon star powers with non-sense scripts to make a box office hit …

      And ya, watching movie has become too expensive but then I usually go for the first day first show so get a good deal in the morning shows :evilgrin:

  2. Sanchit Goyal

    I was hoping that I would maybe get to see the review of “Apartment” movie here so that I can compare my experience with others. But it seems you chose to watch “city of gold” this time.

    Anyway even Apartment is a good show. 7.5/10 ! Though full marks to Neetu Chandra for the acting. She is brilliant in the role.

    Maybe I would right a review tomorrow if I get time! 😀

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